How much better is the Pioneer 434/504 with HDMI instead of component?

Discussion in 'Plasma TVs Forum' started by dealmaker, Mar 25, 2004.

  1. dealmaker

    dealmaker
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    Guys,

    Got a 504 HDE - used mainly for TV viewing but ocassionally will watch a DVD in there.

    Currently I have an Arcam FMJ DV27 feeding progressive on component - looks good.

    Question is - how much better is the HDMI input - and should I sell my DV27 to replace it with a Pioneer HDMI DVD player DV868i thinggamyjig?

    Thanks
     
  2. Claus

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    Hi,

    The HDMI gives better black levels, noise free picture, better resolution(720p) and a picture with much more depth. All in all, a much better PQ.

    Claus
     
  3. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    Well I will disagree with Claus. How much better HDMI is or is not is dependant on many factors. It is NOT always better. In fact I would suggest that with much material you will probably find the FMJ preferable to watch.

    Perhaps a more suitable way to spend money in an upgrade would be to add an SDI output to the FMJ and then partner it with a suitably equipped video processor that will make all your sources better and give you an even better image than the HDMI from an 868.

    Gordon
     
  4. dealmaker

    dealmaker
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    Guys,

    Thanks for the input.

    Gordon,

    Being ignorant in these things - how much would an SDI mod cost and how much would a Video Processor cost.

    Secondly how would I connect the Video processor to my PDP504?...and would my other source (a Sony freeview box connect via the processor also)?

    How big an improvement will I see from the processor on normal day-to-day viewing (Freeview)?

    Thanks!
     
  5. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    SDI mods vary from £350 upwards I believe. SDI input scalers vary in price as well from £1000 or less s/h to new.

    An good off board video processor should make a significant difference to freeview. I know Joe Fernand has been having great success watching the footie on his 504 using an external processor (lumagen which I distribute). You could use VGA or DVI inputs if available

    Gordon
     
  6. MAW

    MAW
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    Can I second that opinion. Digital is not yet the be all and end all. HDMI is not about picture quality, though it has potential. It's about Hollywood paranoia and copy protection. I suppose they're right of course. As for higher resolution, a bit of thought puts paid to that! What is the vertical resolution of a PAL DVD? Hands up! OK Smithers, 576 is the correct answer (leave the horizontal for simplicity) OK, now what happens when you put in shrek, a 16:9 film, and view it on a 768 pixel vertical res screen? Correct again, it is scaled by the panel's internal scaler. What happens if your DVD player is putting out 720p? Yes correct again, scaling is happening in the DVD player. And what about putting 720p into a 16:9 768 v. res panel? Yes, boringly, it scales it again. So,scale once or scale trice in 2 different devices, neither of them cutting edge? Your call. I know which I prefer. And preferable again is to take the maths away from the imbeciles and give it to those clever Lumagen people. Then it will be done properly, but maybe not best with a Pioneer HDE panel, as you'll have this ugly cable sticking out of the front of your media box, cos Pioneer forgot to enable the panel to accept native resolution via digital input.
     
  7. NonPayingMember

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    Certainly true when comparing 868 via component to 868 via HDMI, but the Arcam via component will give a much classier picture overall. :smashin:

    :lesson: Definitely take Gordon's advice on the upgrade if you want something more, maybe go up to the Lumagen first, then go for the SDI mod next (or at the same time if you're feeling minted!!).:lesson:

    I've heard people wonder if Pioneer took a step backwards on the component output of the 868, on purpose, to make the "leap" up to HDMI connection more impressive....
     
  8. dealmaker

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    Guys,

    Interesting what you say about the DVD player input scenario.

    So basically if I buy a "Lumagen" I would connect evryting else (Freeview, DVD and PC) thrugh that - then it would in turn connect via the VGA (PC) input on the front of the media panel (That wont be a cosmetic issue for me as the media box is in a dedicated hi-fi cupboard/unit)

    I'll then get better results on all my components??...and they'll all be controllable as normal?

    How much does one of these Lumagens cost?

    Thanks
     
  9. MAW

    MAW
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    Liam, I am the cynic who 1st mentioned that nasty little theory. But I'm like that. Not a big fan of HDE models as you can tell. I'd take the MXE and a Lumagen any day.
     
  10. Jasonjo

    Jasonjo
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    Surely not??? :p :devil:
     
  11. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    Dealmaker

    The current 'analogue' only Lumagen Vision has an SRP of £800 and there are three new HDTV DVI enabled products on the way at £800, £1200 and £1950 (with options for SDI).

    I use the Vision downstream of my four Interlaced YUV sources (pre switched on a Zektor HDS4) and it does work very well with the 504 and enables me to play about with refresh rates to best match the panels processing.

    Remember also you have a great sounding player in the FMJ DV27 so don't concentrate on wanting a digital video out and sacrificing your audio.

    I use the Interlaced out from my FMJ DV27 into the Vision and its excellent - I guess you have two options as far as Lumagen goes at this time; the all analogue Vision or await the Vision DVI (DVI Digital out only) or the Vision HDP (DVI Digital or Analogue out).

    We do offer the Vision on approval if you cant come to us.

    Best regards

    Joe

    PS Don't know if it had anything to do with the Lumagen or not but the Bhoys looked immense tonight :D
     
  12. Lewdannie

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    Hello I am an average punter from Australia and I have been reading the AVForums for a while now in order to narrow down my choice for a 42 inch plasma to replace my 69cm Panasonic CRT. I have read with interest the posts regarding the Pioneer 434 and the HDMI scaling issue and I am getting increasingly confused. I really am struggling with the whole concept of scaling (to be honest I am not even sure what this really means).
    Here’s the thing…

    The plasma will act as the main family TV viewing platform and as such will need to be relatively idiot free. I will be connecting, a high definition free to air box as all domestic stations (if not content) are transmitted in HiDef here now.

    I have a PioneerDV-535 player which gets sporadic use, but we have a young child who will no doubt watch Finding Nemo incessantly in a few months.

    We have access to cable TV which is not standard definition yet, but later in the year we may upgrade to FOXTEL DIGITAL which transmits at Standard Definition (DVD quality). Analog signals are inadequate where I live and so the inbuilt tuner is redundant.

    I have a Mini-component Yamaha system (GX-707) which I know is pretty crappy, but it actually meets our needs and the space quite well. No doubt the next step would be a proper receiver, but this may compete with a DVD/HD recorder in order of priority.

    I would want to connect a PC (and later a new laptop) to the screen for occasional PC Internet use, but this would not be a regular occurrence. Max 4 hours a week.

    We were taken with the swivel stands that the Hitachi and Pioneer plasma come with standard here and we would use this feature).

    I think the Pioneer is an excellent looking piece of furniture and teamed with the soon to be released black speakers (remember, it needs to be easy for the wife and child) will look sensational in our space. I have seen the 43MXE pictures recently posted and note that it is not as pretty and it obviously won’t include speakers or a swivel stand.

    Based on the above, is the 434 HDE such a mistake? Are the issues raised here and in other forums by Beekeeper (to do with multiple scaling between the output device and the multimedia box) going to affect me and my future use?

    Will I be making a horrible mistake?

    cheers and beers

    Lewdannie
     
  13. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    Lewdannie

    The Pioneer PDP-434HDE like every TV or Display on the planet looks at its best with a high quality signal - what many of us here try to do is eek out the final few percent of performance from these devices.

    With the sources you describe you will find the 04HDE PlasmaTV an excellent choice for your family viewing - though it has to be said I wouldn't mind a day spent with the Pioneer design team to try and understand why certain things work they way they do and maybe give them a few pointers as to making things that bit better.

    The double scaling issues with Pioneer's DV-868AVi DVD player is a blunder by someone within Pioneer - why the Flagship DVD player with an inbuilt scaler cant output at resolutions to match with the native resolutions of the company's Flagship PlasmaTV products seems beyond comprehension.

    Overall I believe you'll be mighty pleased with an 04HDE - though be prepared to add in a programmable remote to your budget to make the System 'Family Friendly'.

    Best regards

    Joe
     
  14. HoD

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    This is also something I have pondered..

    When I first got my Pioneer 434, I had it connected to an all-in-one Sony DVD player/Amp (DAV550). By all accounts this isn't a bad player, and certainly on my old 25inch JVC CRT, the picture looked fine. The picture on the plasma (interlaced or progressive)was to my disappointment, frankly terrible. Smeary, noisy and unpleasant to watch. 3K down then drain I thought.

    Then, living room furniture rearrangement completed, I finally got to connect my Arcam DV27. What a revelation. Suffice to say I am now delighted with the picture quality. This may of course be because it was so bad before.

    If the new Pioneer HDMI players are as bad as my Sony in non-HDMI mode, then is the HDMI picture quality going to be any better than I have now?
     
  15. MAW

    MAW
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    No, the gist of this thread, and it seems it's a concensus opinion, is that a top class analogue signal will beat a scaled-twice HDMI signal from a mediocre source (and most are that still, though this will change) any day. Stck with the Arcam, a great player. Particularly as you seem happy with the picture now.
     
  16. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    HoD

    What's that a shiny new Arcam with HDMI output on its way and an HDMI equipped FMJ-DV27 replacement on the cards soon too - keep saving :)

    Alternatively have the FMJ-DV27 modded to SDI and add the Lumagen VisionHDP - you won't regret it.

    Joe
     
  17. HoD

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    I had rather hoped for an HDMI upgrade path for the DV27..
     
  18. joys_R_us

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    Double scaling is not a fault of HDMI but your decision to get the 868 instead of the 668 which is also much cheaper. (of course Joe is right in questioning the logic of Pio to stop at projector resolutions of 720 instead of bringing the job to a proper end with 768p)

    Having the HDMI also leaves the future path open for more HDCP devices like settop-boxes or HD-TV which all might need the HDCP feature.
     
  19. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    HoD

    Hadn't we all :)

    But alas it looks like its not to be.

    Joe
     

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